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Thursday
Apr142011

Duke Rape Accuser Crystal Mangum May Face Murder Charges

Jupiterimages/Comstock/Thinkstock(DURHAM, N.C.) -- Crystal Mangum, the woman who claimed three Duke lacrosse players raped her five years ago, could soon be facing murder charges after the man she's accused of stabbing has died.

Mangum, 32, allegedly stabbed live-in boyfriend Reginald Daye, 46, during an April 3 argument. According to Durham, N.C., police, Mangum stabbed him in the torso with a kitchen knife. He was taken to Duke University Hospital and treated for serious injuries. Daye died Wednesday evening, according to police.

"More than likely, we will be upgrading the charge to murder," Durham Police Chief Jose Lopez Sr. told The Herald Sun of Durham Wednesday.


During a 911 call, a man requesting an ambulance to the residence said Mangum was the attacker. "I told him she was trouble from the very beginning," the man said.

A man who said he was the victim's cousin told ABC affiliate WTVD that Mangum and the victim had a brief relationship.

"I mean he was excited," the man said. "He was like, 'Man, guess who I'm dating now.' He was excited, but I told him, 'Man, you know her background. Be careful.'"

Mangum is currently being held in jail on a $300,000 bond and charged with assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill.

In February 2010, Mangum was arrested and charged with attempted murder, arson and child abuse after an argument with Milton Walker, then her boyfriend. According to police, she attacked Walker and set his clothes on fire in the bathtub while three children were present. She also allegedly told Walker "I'm going to stab you [expletive]!" in front of officers.

She was found guilty in December of three counts of child abuse, injury to personal property and resisting a public officer. She was sentenced to 88 days in jail, which she had already served while awaiting trial. The felony arson charge was dismissed.

In 2006, Mangum accused three Duke lacrosse players of raping her at an off-campus party. She and another dancer had been paid to perform for the team. Her story was eventually found to be false and a year later charges against the players were dropped.

In 2008, she graduated from college with a degree in police psychology and released a memoir titled, That Last Dance for Grace: The Crystal Mangum Story.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr142011

Missing Georgia Mom Wazineh Suleiman Found Alive 

ABC News(BARTOW COUNTY, Ga.) -- Missing Georgia woman Wazineh Suleiman, the mother of five young children who disappeared nearly a week ago, has been found safe and is hiding in an undisclosed location, police told ABC News Thursday.

"She is alive and well," Bartow County Sheriff Clark Millsap. "I received a phone call from a sheriff here in the state of Georgia. At her request I will not tell you where she is."

The sheriff's statement indicates that Suleiman, 30, ran away.

"She does not want anyone to know where she is. We are not going to divulge her location at her request," Millsap said.

The sheriff said investigators are interviewing the woman. She was with a friend, police said. The friend called her husband, Abed Suleiman, police said.

Sources told ABC News that Wazineh Suleiman is extremely afraid of her husband.

Before Wazineh Suleiman surfaced, her husband, Abed Suleiman, was questioned for three hours Wednesday night by police.

"I was a suspect...and they wanted to totally rule me out. They kind of already did that. They just wanted to iron out all the wrinkles and they did that," Abed Suleiman told ABC Affiliate WSB-TV as he left the sheriff's office Wednesday night.

Abed Suleiman claimed that his wife had left Friday night to rent a movie from Walmart and never returned. Surveillance video showed that Wazineh Suleiman never entered the Walmart.

Abed had just returned from a canceled hunting trip in Kentucky when he found his wife had disappeared, he claimed.

The two exchanged heated text messages following her disappearance, Abed Suleiman claimed. In the text messages, Wazineh Suleiman cursed at her husband and threatened to throw the phone out the window. "There were two text messages where there was profanity used. We are very religious, very religious...Wazineh would never, ever, ever...talk to me like that or text me like that. She never has and I was saying something is not right," Abed Suleiman said Wednesday.

There is no record of domestic violence between the couple. He told ABC News that he treated his wife like a queen.

"My wife is my life," he said. "Anybody that know us, a lot of people look at us and say these guys are a perfect couple and a perfect family."

For a short time last year, Wazineh Suleiman lived with her family in Israel for two months. She had recently gotten her first job.

Wazineh Suleiman married Abed when she was 17. The devout Muslim couple had recently found themselves in deep financial trouble. The couple is more than half a million dollars in debt to more than 50 creditors, according to a federal bankruptcy court . They filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in August, the court documents show.

Police had found Wazineh Suleiman's abandoned SUV in an empty parking lot 12 miles from the Walmart where was supposed to have gone to rent a movie.

Abed Suleiman had gone to Kentucky Friday on a hunting trip with a friend but returned to Georgia when he realized he'd confused the dates for when hunting season begins, he said.

"I pulled into the driveway and my buddy said, 'Hey, your wife's truck is not there.' I look over and my jaw just dropped," Suleiman said Tuesday. "I was in shock. That doesn't make sense. She just doesn't leave without telling me."

He said he found his kids watching television.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr142011

Navy Drops Discharge of Sailor Found Asleep with Another Man

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(ANNAPOLIS, Md.) -- The Navy has dropped discharge proceedings against a young petty officer accused of "unprofessional conduct" after he was found asleep in bed with another male sailor earlier this year.

Stephen Jones, 21, a student at the Naval Nuclear Power Training Command in Charleston, S.C., had said his attempted ouster was motivated by homophobia, not a legitimate crime.

"This was an attempt to utilize supposed misconduct to get around 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' provisions," said Jones' civilian attorney Gary Meyers. "He's never said that he's gay, and no one asked him. It's irrelevant. He didn't do anything wrong."

The reprieve for Jones came Friday from the "upper echelons" of the Navy, Meyers said.

In an interview last month, Jones said he and friend Brian McGee inadvertently dozed off while watching the Vampire Diaries on a computer in his quarters Feb. 6.

"I asked several times about what was unprofessional about what I did, and every time they said it's just unprofessional. Period," said Jones.

Jones was wearing pajama pants and a white t-shirt, laying on top of the covers; McGee was in boxer shorts under the blanket on Jones' twin bed, according to both men's accounts.

When Jones' roommate, Tyler Berube, walked in shortly after midnight, the sleepy sailors woke up, got dressed and went back to their rooms.

Several days later, however, Jones and McGee were cited with dereliction of duty for "willfully failing to exhibit professional conduct in his room," according to the Navy report specifying the charges.

McGee accepted the charge and received docked pay. But when Jones refused to accept a penalty, instead hoping for a court martial to prove his innocence, he was ordered separated from the Navy for good.

While there was no evidence of homosexual conduct presented in the statements given by the three men to military investigators, Jones and his civilian attorney Gary Meyers believe homophobic suspicions were motivation for the charge.

Gay and lesbian advocates also warned the case illustrates a loophole for continued discrimination against homosexual service members complication despite the impending repeal of the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy.

A copy of the Navy's investigative report confirms that Berube discovered the two men asleep in bed, well before the 2 a.m. curfew Feb. 6, but does not detail how Jones or McGee may have exhibited unprofessional behavior.

"Guys are always playing video games, watching movies, in other people's quarters," Jones said. "Brian and I hung out on a regular basis. Curfew was 2 a.m. We woke up between 12 and 12:30, and were back in our rooms before 1. I have never been in trouble ever in all of my life."

A spokesman for the Naval Nuclear Training Command did not respond to ABC News' requests for comment but told the Washington Post, which first reported on the case, that "the determination was that two sailors sharing the same rack was unprofessional."

Attorney Meyers said, "If this is a problem, every kid who was ever in a fraternity or sorority or in a dorm room, wearing boxers and sitting on the bed, is going to have to look at their conduct again."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr142011

COO of Air Traffic Organization Resigns Over Sleeping Controllers

John Foxx/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Following reports that a third air traffic controller was caught sleeping on the job,  the chief operating officer of the Air Traffic Organization announced Thursday he was resigning from his position.

Randy Babbitt, administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, accepted Hank Krakowski's resignation and said David Grizzle, the FAA's chief counsel, will step in temporarily to fill the spot.

Babbitt added that a nationwide search will be conducted to appoint a new, permanent COO for the ATO, which is responsible for operating the country's air traffic control system.

The resignation comes amid news that an air traffic controller reportedly nodded off Wednesday morning while a plane carrying a critically ill patient was trying to land at the Reno-Tahoe International Airport in Nevada.  The controller, who was out of communication for approximately 16 minutes, was suspended while the Federal Aviation Administration investigates the incident.

The latest incident marks the third time in less than two months that an air traffic controller has been caught sleeping on the job.

Last month at Washington, D.C.'s Reagan National Airport, a controller on his fourth consecutive overnight shift left the radio tower silent after apparently falling asleep.  Two commercial airliners were forced to land on their own.

In February, a controller in Knoxville, Tennessee went to sleep on the job during a midnight shift.  Sources told ABC News that the controller made a bed on the floor of the control tower with couch pillows.

In response to Wednesday's incident, the FAA and the Department of Transportation announced that additional air traffic controllers would be immediately added on the midnight shift at 27 control towers that currently have only one person working overnights -- including Reno. 

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr142011

Texas Man Claims He Fathered Children with Teacher

ABC News(HOUSTON) -- A judge has allowed a 20-year-old man to see the two daughters that he allegedly fathered with his high school teacher.

Bradman Moore claims he began having sex with Anne Lynn Montgomery when he was a 15-year-old freshman at Sharpstown High School in Houston. Montgomery, then 30 years old, was the school's dance instructor and Moore was on the school's dance team.

Moore said that they started having sex in 2006, and had their first daughter about a year after that. Another daughter soon followed, he said, adding that he transferred to another high school, moved in with Montgomery and helped raise the children.

But Montgomery filed a protective order against Moore on behalf of herself and her children, claiming that Moore physically abused her. The two were in court on Monday.

He has denied the allegations, but the restraining order was granted.

"She wants it to be where there's a restraining order for my children, but I've never hurt my children. I've never harmed my children," Moore told ABC News' Houston affiliate KTRK TV.

"It's an amazing feeling," he said of the judge's decision to allow him to see his daughters. "The children are my only concern, that is my concern, they are my children."

He told KTRK that he came forward with his story out of fear that he wouldn't be able to see his children, but now Houston police are investigating the relationship.

Investigators took DNA samples from Moore and have begun a statutory rape investigation.

Moore said he found out he wasn't the only student to have had a relationship with Montgomery.

"There was a total of 6 students including myself, she had improper relationships with," he said.

When KTRK asked Montgomery whether she had had sex with Moore or other students, one of her attorneys replied that they had no comment.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr142011

Yale University Limits Access to Power Equipment After Student Death

Christopher Capozziello/Getty Images(NEW HAVEN, Conn.) -- Yale University has moved to limit undergraduate students' access to power equipment after the death of senior Michele Dufault in a campus machine shop early Wednesday morning.

"This is a true tragedy," Yale President Richard C. Levin said in a statement.  "Last night, Michele's hair got caught in a lathe as she worked on a project in the student machine shop in the Sterling Chemistry Laboratory.  Her body was found by other students who had been working in the building.  They called the police, who responded immediately."

Dufault, of Scituate, Massachusetts, was an astronomy and physics major who was expected to graduate with a bachelor's of science degree this spring.  The state medical examiner's office said Dufault died from "accidental asphyxia by neck compression."

Levin said even though the university has programs to train students before they use power equipment, he initiated a "thorough review of the safety policies and practices of laboratories, machine shops, and other facilities with power equipment that is accessed and operated by undergraduates."

"Until the review is completed, Yale College will limit undergraduate access to facilities with power equipment to hours that will be specified by the end of the week; monitors will be present at these times in all such locations," the statement continued.

The Yale chemistry department's website says it has a state-of-the-art machine shop to allow students to construct or modify research instrumentation.  Access is strictly limited to those who have completed the shop course.  The laboratory was closed Wednesday, with all classes and labs in the building cancelled.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr142011

Florida Father Arrested After Seen Encouraging Son to Fight in Video

Digital Vision/Thinkstock(HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla.) -- A Florida father has been banned from seeing his children after a video made the rounds on the Internet showing him encouraging his son to beat another boy.

In the video, Philip Struthers, 41, is seen egging his 16-year-old son on as he fights another teenage boy over a girl.

"Knock him out, Jake!...Punch his eyes out!  Slam his head on the ground," Struthers is heard saying in the clip.

Authorities say the father made no attempt to break up the fight.  They arrested him Tuesday and charged him with child abuse and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Struthers was released from a Hillsborough County jail on Wednesday after posting bond.  A judge ordered him to stay away from anyone younger than 18, including his son and the other teen in the fight, according to the St. Petersburg Times.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr142011

North Dakota Residents Asked to Evacuate Due to Possible Dam Break

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock (file photo)(BURLINGTON, N.D.) -- As a dam gets closer towards breaking in North Dakota, people living near the Des Lacs River have been asked to evacuate their homes ahead of possible flooding.

But some are choosing to brush off the warning.

"Some people are sticking it out.  And some people left.  I'd say [Wednesday night] it was like 50-50," said Burlington Police Chief Keith Crabb.

About 200 residents of Burlington were asked to leave the area.  Crabb said the evacuation wasn't mandatory, but a "request evacuation."

"We requested for their safety to leave the area," he said.

The dam was built back in the 1930s and is made of clay, dirt and rock, Crabb noted.  He said it has "three holes in it right now that are kind of eroding," and, should it fail, the dam would add about three feet of water to the already swollen Des Lacs River.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr142011

US Charges Somali Hostage Negotiator with Piracy

Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The U.S. Justice Department announced Wednesday that a man identified by Somali pirates as the person responsible for negotiating the ransom of four U.S. citizens held hostage on the high seas and then killed last February, has been indicted on piracy and kidnapping charges.

The justice department says Mohammad Shibin was apprehended in Somalia and transferred to the United States to stand trial.

Federal officials say Shibin was not among the 14 Somalia pirates who boarded the yacht with the four Americans, but instead worked behind the scenes to see how much cash could be extorted for their release.

Neil McBride, the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, announced that the arrest marks "the first time the U.S. government has captured and charged an alleged pirate in the leadership role -- a hostage negotiator who operated in Somalia.”

While the U.S military was attempting to negotiate the release of the four hostages -- Scott Underwood Adam, Jean Savage Adam, Phyllis Patricia Macay and Robert Campbell Riggle -- the pirates on board the yacht shot and killed them.  The U.S. took the Somali pirates into custody following the shooting.

Shibin was indicted on March 8 in Virginia and appeared in federal court Wednesday.  The piracy and kidnapping charges each carry a maximum penalty of life in prison.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr132011

Baseball Field Named for Youngest Tucson Shooting Victim, Christina-Taylor Green

Ryan McVay/Thinkstock(TUCSON, Ariz.) -- The field where Christina-Taylor Green once played baseball and dreamed of becoming the first female major leaguer now bears her name and the statue of an angel.

On April 1, Little League's opening day, parents and children gathered to celebrate Christina-Taylor's life and the renaming of Field 1 for her.

Christina-Taylor, age 9, was shot in the chest Jan. 8 outside a Tucson, Ariz., grocery store. She was attending an informal town hall meeting for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords when alleged gunman Jared Loughner opened fire. She was the youngest of six people killed.

Her teammates in the Canyon Del Oro Little League, just northwest of Tucson, said that although it felt good to play baseball again, they missed her.

One of two girls on the team, Christina-Taylor would challenge a coach to a footrace and win; throw long from third base; and sing Beyonce songs in the field. Mae Sinclair, now the team's only female player, said Christina-Taylor showed the boys how to play baseball.

"She would catch balls and she would stand up to the boys even if they say she's a girl, she's not allowed to play," Mae said.

With the support of her father, John Green, a top scout for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Christina-Taylor aspired to be the first woman in the major leagues.

"I said, 'There aren't any [female Major League Baseball players] right now but that doesn't mean there can't be in the future,'" he said.

Her mother, Roxanna Green, said nothing prepares a parent for a child's death. "It was the worst day of my life," she said. "It was terrible."

Dallas Green, Christina-Taylor's grandfather and a former Philadelphia Phillies manager, said the family suffered through rough times. "It just hurt like, you just couldn't believe it," he said. "I mean you just couldn't believe that it could happen to her."

For Mae, Christina-Taylor's example lives on and inspires. "She goes, 'You know what, Daddy? I think I want to follow in Christina's steps and be that first woman baseball player,'" said her father, Lance Sinclair.

"She was one of my best friends," Mae said. "She was a great baseball player."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio